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What is Sustainability?

“Sustainability is generally used to contrast with a lack

of sustainability which is seen as something which
breaks down or does not continue. In some cases,
sustainability is used simply to mean that the long-
term result of some action or set of actions is
consistent with desired outcomes”
- Hardoy, Mitlin and Satterwaite (1992)
Social sustainability

It “suggests that institutions, customary behaviour,

and relationships should be sustained”

- Hardoy, Mitlin and Satterwaite (1992)

Cultural sustainability

It is “relating the need to develop within human

society shared values, perceptions and attitudes
which help to contribute to the achievement of
sustainable development”
- Hardoy, Mitlin and Satterwaite (1992)
Ecological sustainability

It refers to the knowledge that natural resources are

needed to achieve economic development but that
they also have limits
- Hardoy, Mitlin and Satterwaite (1992)
Criteria of Sustainability

“The activity does not damage natural resources…

as if the project had never happened.”

“The activity does damage some natural resources

but it has positive impacts on other natural

“The activity does not damage the natural

resources required for completing the activity
Degrees of Sustainability

(Substitutability Paradigm)
“as long as total capital stays constant,
sustainable development can be achieved”

(Non-substitutability Paradigm)
“in order for sustainable development to be
achieved, natural capital has to be kept
constant independently from man-made
Consumption of State of
renewable resources environment
More than nature's ability Environmental
Not sustainable
to replenish degradation
Equal to nature's ability to Environmental Steady-state
replenish equilibrium Economy
Less than nature's ability Environmental Sustainable
to replenish renewal development
Source: Wikipedia (Retrieved June 14, 2008 from
What is Sustainable Development?

It the “management of human activities—one

concentrating on development goals, the other
controlling or limiting the harmful impacts of human
activities on the environment”
- Hardoy, Mitlin and Satterwaite (1992)

It is the use of resources to meet certain human

needs with the goal of preserving the environment
so as not to compromise the needs of the future
- Wikipedia
Areas under Sustainable Development
Agriculture, International law, Atmosphere, International
Cooperation for Enabling Environment, Biodiversity,
Biotechnology, Institutional Arrangements, Capacity-building,
Land Management, Climate change, Major Groups,
Consumption and Production Patterns, Mountains,
Demographics, National Sustainable Development Strategies,
Desertification and Drought, Disaster Reduction and
Management, Oceans and Seas, Education and Awareness,
Poverty, Energy, Sanitation, Finance, Science, Forests, SIDS,
Fresh water, Sustainable Tourism, Health, Technology, Human
Settlements, Indicators ,Toxic Chemicals, Trade and
Environment Industry, Transport, Information for Decision
Making and Participation, Waste (Hazardous), Waste
(Radioactive), Integrated Decision Making, Waste (Solid),
Minimizing use of non-
renewable resources
Goals of Sustainable
Development Sustainable use of
renewable resources

Keeping within
Development absorptive capacity of
local and global sinks
for wastes

Access to

human Choice
Participation in
national and local
politics and
Access to adequate respect of human
Shelter and healthy rights
(including basic services)
Progress towards Sustainable Development

A.World Conservation Strategy

- published in March 1980 which consists of the
work of many scientists, specialist advisers,
government agencies and conservation
- The main point of the Strategy is that
“conservation and development need each
Progress towards Sustainable Development

B. World Commission on Environment and

- established in 1983 and was later known as
Brundtland Commission
- Product: report titled Our Common Future, also
known as Brundtland Report, published in April
Progress towards Sustainable Development


1. “The basic needs of humanity…must be met”

2. “The limits to development are not absolute but

are imposed by present states of technology and
social organization and by the impacts upon
environmental resources and upon the biosphere’s
ability to absorb the effects of human activities.
But technology and social organization can be both
managed and improved to make way for a new era
of economic growth”
Progress towards Sustainable Development
OUR COMMON FUTURE: Objectives for Sustainable

1. Reviving economic growth

2. Changing the quality of growth
3. Meeting essential needs for jobs, food,
energy, water, sanitation
4. Ensuring a sustainable level of population
5. Conserving and enhancing the resources
6. Reorienting technology and managing risk
7. Merging environment and economics in
decision-making processes
Progress towards Sustainable Development
OUR COMMON FUTURE: Priority areas

1. Getting at the Sources

2. Dealing with the Effects
3. Assessing Global Risks
4. Making Informed Choices
5. Providing the Legal Means
6. Investing in our Future
Progress towards Sustainable Development

C. Caring for the Earth

-Released by the International Union for
Conservation of Nature (IUCN), United Nations
Environment Programme (UNEP) and World Wide
Funds (WWF) in 1991
-“the aim of Caring for the Earth is to help improve
the condition of the world’s people, by defining two
requirements. One is to secure a widespread and
deeply-held commitment to…the ethic for
sustainable living, and to translate its principles
into practice. The other is to integrate
conservation and development”
Progress towards Sustainable Development

D. United Nations Conference on Environment

and Development
-The Rio Declaration of Environment and
-Agenda 21
-Statement of Principles
-The United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change
-The Convention on Biological Diversity
Progress towards Sustainable Development

E. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment

-a 2,500-page report released in March 25 which
gave an update on the situation of the environment

BBC summarized the Assessment in the following


“Airlines do not pay for the carbon dioxide they put

into the atmosphere.”

“The price of food does not reflect the cost of

cleaning waterways that have been polluted by run-
off of agrochemicals from the land.”
Issues involving Sustainable Development
A. Corporate Interests and People’s Welfare
-During the Earth Summit in 1992, many
business leaders were opposed to actions towards
sustainable development but after ten years they
were the ones who are pushing for sustainable
development by “providing proposal for
‘partnership initiatives’ to enhance sustainability”
-Businesses are “draping themselves in the blue
of the United Nations in order to get themselves
some brownie points to look good to
governments” when they may be the ones having
activities which has adverse effects to the
Issues involving Sustainable Development
A. Corporate Interests and People’s Welfare
-Wealthy countries improve at the expense of
poorer nations
-The existence of these NGOs suggests that the
states and markets have failed to meet the needs
of these people and thus they are turning to the
NGOs for support
-The Human Development Report 1998 Overview
of UNDP showed that “globally, the 20% of the
world’s people in the highest-income countries
account for 86% of total private consumption
expenditures- the poorest 20% a miniscule 1.3%”
Issues involving Sustainable Development
B. Poverty and Environment
-Poorer countries are stripping their resources in
order to survive or pay off debts to richer
-“a planet could sustain a high population…but it
is a combination of things like how we use
resources, for what purpose, how many, how the
use of those resources change over time, etc.,
that defines whether they are used inefficiently or
not and whether we will run out of them or not”
Issues involving Sustainable Development

B. Poverty and Environment

-“to understand why people go hungry, you must
stop thinking about food as something farmers
grow for others to eat, and begin thinking about
it as something companies produce for other
people to buy”
Issues involving Sustainable Development
C. Water and Development
-Around one-third of the world’s population is
experiencing either water scarcity or water
-Some don’t have access to clean water thus
there are deaths due to water-borne diseases
such as diarrhea
-There were concerns raised about upcoming
wars over water but experts disagree on this
because according to them scarcity is not the
problem but the mismanagement of water
Areas covered by Sustainable Development

 Poverty
- … still remains the world’s most
prominent factor in sustainable

- … is linked to overpopulation and its

- TRIVIA: If trend persists, only 25%
of African population can be fed.

- Sudden population boom makes a

region exceed its capacity.
 Energy
- Globe is at its peak of fossil fuel (ff)

- Over 40% of the globe relies on ff for

energy production.
- New sources of renewable energy
have been discovered recently.

- One good example is the Maria

Cristina Falls Hyderoelectric Plant in
Iligan City, Mindanao.
 Ecotourism
- … otherwise known as Ecological

- … is a kind of tourism which focuses

on volunteering, personal growth,
and, of course, tourism per se.
- … includes programs to reduce
negative effects of conventional
tourism to the environment.

- It includes RRR, H2O conservation,

and promotion of indigenous
 Sanitation
- In estimation, five million
(5,000,000) people around the world
die annually from easily-treatable
water-borne infections as a result of
inadequate sanitation and hygiene
- Due to overflowing landfills and dump
sites, local governments are now
implementing incineration of solid wastes
as a mean of proper disposal.

- . In the said process, CFCs are produced.

Such compounds destroy the atmosphere
which leads to grave, macabre
 Capacity Building
- … refers to the process of assisting
mostly developing countries to
develop a specific skill or capacity,
both financial and social.

- … is, however, not limited to

international programs and social
reforms concept.
 Public Health
- … is the science and art of preventing
disease, prolonging life and
promoting health through the
organized efforts and informed
choices of society, organizations,
public and private, communities and
- There are three main categories of
public health: epidemiology,
biostatics, and health services.

- Environmental health is also one of

the core subfields of public health.
Present actions taken to
achieve sustainable development
 Agenda 21
- Social and Economic Dimension
- Conservation and Management of
Resources for Development
- Strengthening the Role of Major
- Means and Implementation
 Prius Effect
- Toyota Prius
- ‘Environmental’ awareness of Toyota
- Masking
Hardoy, Jorge E., Mitlin, Diana and David Satetrhwaite (1992). Environmental
problems in Third World cities. London: Earthscan Publications
Palmer, Joy A. (1998). Environmental Education in the 21st Century. London:
Shah, Anup (2005 Feb 12). Poverty and the Environment. Retrieved June 14,
2008 from asp.
Shah, Anup (2005 May 26). Sustainable Development. Retrieved June 14, 2008
Shah, Anup (2007 Sept 1). Water and Development. Retrieved June 14, 2008
Shah, Anup (2002 Sept 7). World Summit on Sustainable Development.
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Sustainability. Retrieved July 2, 2008 from
Sustainable Development. Retrieved June 14, 2008 from

REPORTERS: Lorelynn Therese Y. Felix

Miguel Nathan M. Tolibas
Environmental Science 1